TommyP's Vintage Drums

Comments by TommyP:

Tommy is an avid player/collector, who enjoys playing these vintage drums.

Vintage 1965 Rogers "Buddy Rich - Celebrity" setup

1965 Rogers "Buddy Rich - Celebrity" kit

I completely restored this 1965 Rogers BR Celebrity, with a few "changes" to suit my playing personality! I had no choice in the decision to restore these as the shells were fabulous, but the WMP wrap was completely destroyed. The kit was an ORIGINAL factory matched set in these sizes: 14" X 22", 9" X 13", 16" X 16", 16" X16" toms, and 5" X 14" ORIGINAL WMP Dynasonic snare drum. The Dynasonic is a '66 and is completely original, not restored. I sold the 2nd 16" X 16" and picked up a '65 Rogers 14" X 14" with amazingly close sequence in the serial numbers! I still have the original 9" X 13" tom too. So the configuration that I gig on, and what you see here is with 14" X 14" and 16" X 16" floor toms.

ALL hardware is complete and original including my original Swivo-Matic pedal, which is the pedal I play with ALL my different kits. Cymbals are all Sabian HH's in these sizes: 20" Medium Ride, 17" Extra Thin Crash, 17" Thin Crash, 6" Splash, 13" HHats. I use this same cymbal set with all my kits.

The tonal spread and response on this kit is incredible. Typical Rogers! There isn't a gig that goes by where I'm not entertaining questions/comments about this kit. And of course, the best intangible is that I think of Buddy every time I play them! This was my main gigging kit until... (See below)

1966 Rogers "Buddy Rich - Headliner" kit

Vintage 1966 Rogers "Buddy Rich - Headliner" setup

This kit is COMPLETELY ORIGINAL with all original hardware. The WMP has little to no fade. I bought these from a guy who got them from an old jazz drummer that played around Boston MA. The interesting thing is: He NEVER took these drums out of his house! They were purchased as a practice kit. This is the main reason that the WMP is so pristine. This kit is made all the more rare by the fact that it has DUAL 14X14 floor toms. A kit in the true BR configuration. Here are the sizes:

14" X 20" bass drum, 8" X 12", (2) 14" X 14" toms, and a 5" X 14" COS Powertone (or I'll use my '66 or '67 WMP Rogers Dynasonic)

Again, typical Rogers. Incredible sound/response. I gig full time and have been playing this kit for the past three years straight, until... (See below)

1948 (WFL) Ludwig Buddy Rich Classic Model

Vintage 1948 Ludwig (WFL) drums

Vintage 1948 Ludwig (WFL) drums

Vintage 1948 Ludwig (WFL) drums

Vintage 1948 Ludwig (WFL) drums

Vintage 1948 Ludwig (WFL) drums

This was a real find! This kit is COMPLETELY ORIGINAL and un-restored. (I did clean and detail though!) It was cataloged/sold by WFL/Ludwig in the EXACT BR set up. The sizes are:

14" X 24" bass drum, 9" X 13" and (2) 16" X 16" toms, and a 5 1/2" X 14" snare drum.

Of interest is that the original snare drum that came with the kit is actually a 6 1/2" X 14", as that is what was offered with the kit in 1948. I have the drum and it is near mint in condition. I opt to play the WFL 5 1/2" X14" with this kit which I prefer, and so did Buddy for that matter. This kit has Aluminum badges, not brass. These were a hold over from WWII when the drum companies couldn't use brass... or at least, very little. The fact that it is a complete/matching kit with the Aluminum badges makes it a bit rarer still. Both "L" arms are original and present, as are the "clip on" bass drum spurs. Both 16" X 16" floor toms feature the "Clipper" legs, and they function perfectly. Also of note is that 1948 was the 1st year for the "Clipper" style rack tom mount, which is excellent as it helps put the tom in an actual comfortable playing position! This mount went on to be used by every American drum company and became known as the "Rail Consolette". Another item of interest is that most all drums/kits from this era have Nickel hardware, not Chrome. Chrome could be special ordered at an extra charge, with the exception of the high end kits which did feature Chrome, as this kit does. So,

How do they sound? Listen to any of the BR recordings from 1946 to 1959... that's how they sound! These WFL's have a thin 3 ply shell with maple rings, which gives the drums a much lower fundamental than you would expect, thus I like to refer to it as the WFL/Ludwig "three ply thud". Plenty of tone though, and the bass drum is just phenomenal!

I have been gigging on these as of late. I am thoroughly enjoying these drums, which surprises me as I am such a Rogers guy! But again, they ARE the BR Classic's, and that always puts a smile on my face when I play 'em.

Thanks Mike!


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